CBA Letter on Postal Banking FY2021FSGG 7.27.20

 

July 27, 2020

 

The Honorable Nita Lowey                                                                       The Honorable Kay Granger

Chairwoman                                                                                                 Ranking Member

House Committee on Appropriations                                                    House Committee on Appropriations

H-307, U.S. Capitol                                                                                     H-307, U.S. Capitol

Washington, D.C. 20515                                                                            Washington, D.C.  20515

 

Dear Chairwoman Lowey and Ranking Member Granger:

 

On behalf of the Consumer Bankers Association (CBA), I write in opposition to the amendment offered by Congressman Bill Pascrell and Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur to the fiscal year 2021 appropriations act for Financial Services and General Government that would fund a pilot program for postal banking activities. CBA is the voice of the retail banking industry whose products and services provide access to credit for millions of consumers and small businesses. Our members operate in all 50 states, serve more than 150 million Americans and collectively hold two-thirds of the country’s total depository assets.

 

CBA strongly opposes allowing the U.S. Post Office to offer consumer banking services. The American financial system is a well-regulated, highly complex marketplace that operates under free market principles. CBA members have the expertise and capacity to serve customers’ needs in a way the post office would find difficult. Effectively and safely providing these services requires an institution to have decades of experience in risk management, regulatory compliance, consumer protection, and privacy protection – areas the U.S. Postal Service has little to no knowledge. Additionally, the entrance of a government-subsidized entity into the consumer financial market would not only affect the competitiveness of the nation’s thousands of financial institutions currently serving consumers and small businesses but would also expose American taxpayers to financial risk.

 

A more effective and efficient approach to help expand consumer access to traditional banking services is to enhance the ability of banks to innovate. Every day banks continue to develop and leverage the latest technologies to provide products and services that meet the diverse needs of the U.S. consumer.  Improvement in the delivery of safe and innovative products and services has the potential to serve many Americans that are underserved. Advances in innovation of financial services will drive financial access and promote inclusion for those who struggle finding mainstream financial services.

 

On behalf of CBA’s members, I strongly urge you to reject this amendment to the FY 2021 Financial Services and General Government appropriations bill.

 

Sincerely,

 

Richard Hunt

President and CEO

Consumer Bankers Association

 

CC:         The Honorable Jim McGovern; Chairman, Committee on Rules

               The Honorable Tom Cole; Ranking Member, Committee on Rules